A man who allegedly killed his six-year-old son with the help of his girlfriend last year called the child "f**ing Hitler" and said that he would take his "jaw off his shoulders."
The accused, Thomas Hughes, allegedly killed his son Arthur Labinjo-Hughes with the help of his girlfriend Emma Tustin in June last year by poisoning him with salt. Arthur took his last breaths in a hospital on June 17, a day after he suffered a traumatic brain injury at a home in Cranmore Road, Shirley, West Midlands.
New evidence has emerged against Hughes, 29, and Tustin, 32, who are denying the charges of murder and child cruelty against them at the ongoing trials. On the second day of the trial at Coventry Crown Court, dozens of mobile phone audio recordings of Arthur crying were presented, along with pictures of bruising to his shoulders. WhatsApp messages Hughes and Tustin shared about Arthur between September 2019 and May 2020 were also shown to the jury, reports Birmingham Live.
In one of the texts, Hughes suggested putting Arthur "out with the rubbish" to which his partner responded by describing the boy as being "one." Hughes then texted, "Won't be when I take his f***ing jaw straight off his shoulders".
In another message he sent to Tustin on May 23 last year, he said about his son, "I don't think I can do this any more. He shuts up as soon as you come through the door. He is malicious, cruel and just generally awful." A video filmed the following day showed Arthur on the tiled floor wearing a Batman T-shirt and slapping himself in the face and kicking his head with his own foot.
Hughes commented on another picture of his son, "He's an absolute disgrace. That's not my son." In another text he said Arthur can stay with anyone except him.
In one of the text exchanges, Tustin told Hughes that Arthur was calling for his uncle Blake and a dog, called Harvey, to which Hughes replied, "Wonder who will be next?" Tustin continued "probably Jesus," and Hughes added "Hitler."
Tustin then said, "He is f***ing Hitler."
The couple have continued to deny child cruelty despite the shocking videos one of which showed Arthur repeatedly saying "Daddy's going to throw me out of the window".
The prosecution told the court that though it was Tustin who carried out the alleged fatal assault on Arthur, Hughes should be equally charged for the death. The prosecution said, "In the weeks preceding it they collaborated in a campaign of cruelty intending to cause Arthur significant harm and suffering. Violence and intimidation, both physical and verbal, were routine."